Og for dem der ikke lige er bekendt med rollefordelingen: Jim Hacker er minister og Sir Humphrey er topembedsmand i ministeriet.
Hacker: How many people do we have in this department?
Sir Humphrey: Ummm… well, we’re very small…
Hacker: Two, maybe three thousand?
Sir Humphrey: About twenty three thousand to be precise.
Hacker: TWENTY THREE THOUSAND! In the department of administrative affairs, twenty three thousand! We need to do a time-and-motion study to see who we can get rid of.
Sir Humphrey: We had one of those last year.
Hacker: And what were the results?
Sir Humphrey: It transpired that we needed another five hundred people.
Sir Humphrey: Minister, Britain has had the same foreign policy objective for at least the last five hundred years: to create a disunited Europe. In that cause we have fought with the Dutch against the Spanish, with the Germans against the French, with the French and Italians against the Germans, and with the French against the Germans and Italians. Divide and rule, you see. Why should we change now, when it’s worked so well?
Hacker: That’s all ancient history, surely?
Sir Humphrey: Yes, and current policy. We had to break the whole thing [the EEC] up, so we had to get inside. We tried to break it up from the outside, but that wouldn’t work. Now that we’re inside we can make a complete pig’s breakfast of the whole thing: set the Germans against the French, the French against the Italians, the Italians against the Dutch. The Foreign Office is terribly pleased; it’s just like old times.
Hacker: But surely we’re all committed to the European ideal?
Sir Humphrey: [chuckles] Really, Minister.
Hacker: If not, why are we pushing for an increase in the membership?
Sir Humphrey: Well, for the same reason. It’s just like the United Nations, in fact; the more members it has, the more arguments it can stir up, the more futile and impotent it becomes.
Hacker: What appalling cynicism.
Sir Humphrey: Yes… We call it diplomacy, Minister.
Hacker: Humphrey, do you see it as part of your job to help ministers make fools of themselves?
Sir Humphrey: Well, I never met one that needed any help.
Taget herfra hvor der også kan læses flere. Serien kan varmt anbefales :-)